BZRK (BZRK #1)
The story is in a third person perspective, and you get into the minds of almost every character, which gives an interesting insight into how Grant has imagined the whole nano world. He has so thoroughly described how things might look at a different scale. Most interesting was how these two newbies into BZRK cope with an alteration in their world – they know what regular daily things look like, but when their biots are created, it’s like a third eye has literally been opened for them. The things about nanobots – those I could fully imagine. But the biots – they are beyond my imagination. It was spectacular that Grant created the nano world and his descriptions of an in-detail view of the anatomy is amazing. For a science-fiction novel, it is one of the best I have come across.
I spent the entire time I was reading being absolutely terrified of every little itch and tickle I felt thinking it might be a nanobot. Sure, it’s fiction, but you’re still scared of the dark while reading horror. And I find the idea of tiny little things crawling around my body with the ability to rewire my brain infinitely more terrifying than anything I’ve ever read in any horror book.
In the end, though I didn’t hate BZRK or even particularly dislike it it’s still not really my type of read. It’s highly political and actioney. And frankly, all the nano descriptions really disturbed the crap out of me. I couldn’t really connect with any of the characters either, but then again, third person omniscient was never my favorite POV. It’s a book I’d still suggest to people if I thought they’d like it, though.
The Nutshell: If you’re into political, science, action books then you’ll probably enjoy BRZK. Though it wasn’t a favorite of mine, it’s still a book I’ll be suggesting my younger brother try.
Received: Free for review
Set in the near future, a conspiracy is afoot to create a perfect and perfectly controlled world. The Armstrong Fancy Gift Corporation is a front for the conjoined Armstrong twins, Charles and Benjamin, and the plot to create their own version of utopia.
A shadowy guerilla group known as BZRK form a nascent resistance movement. Both sides develop sophisticated nanotechnology to achieve their goals.
A truly interesting thing about BZRK is its marketing campaign. There were various websites created – gobzrk.com, NexusHumanus.com, DeathorMadness.com, and SocietyTwins.com – which are interrelated with the book’s content, video games (there’s a free iPhone app!) and fan fiction has already started popping up.
Everything about BZRK blew me away starting with the completely original plot. A group of unlikely heroes save the world from destruction. Overdone? Not even close. Twins Charles and Benjamin are joined at the hip (literally) and embarrassed by their deformity, they decide to make the world a better place – where people would not have to feel pain or sorrow because their emotions would be controlled for them. They have a benign goal in mind (or do they?) but a different organization, the BZRK, believes that they are going about it wrong.
They believe humans should retain their free will. The war goes on – not in a battlefield – but inside the minds of ignorant humans (“down in the meat” as they say) with the help of the most powerful armies: nanobots.
The whole novel was such a thrilling ride, I honestly didn’t realize I had turned the last page until I tried vainly to scratch out another page. It was that good.
All the agents use codenames throughout the book which would seem to make it harder to connect to the characters but it just made me all the more curious to find out their real names because knowing a person’s real name is sort of the end-all of understanding the character.
Still, if you are uncomfortable with code names such as Bug Man, there is a glossary in the back explaining each’s role and true name. I found the characters very believable and it was easy to feel for them and understand their emotions.
One of my favorite things about BZRK was its fast pace. Grant condensed a lot within his 386 pages. You were shown how many of the young members joined BZRK and each character was given a little time for his backstory. The two main characters were recruited and taught the basics of the trade, they even got a nice little romance going, and the team almost beat the evil geniuses. There was not a single dull moment in the book. Even the romance was gone within a snap of a finger.
The mood throughout the novel is very dark, often desperate sort of like a dystopian (and you all know how much I adore those). There is a lot of humor in the book, but it’s the ironic dark kind. Another thing I enjoyed very much.
The romance was just the right amount and very nicely done. It was a small element in the story, just the way I like it. And the characters didn’t just suddenly start loving each other due to some unexplained attraction. Two people thrown in horrific circumstances find comfort in each other – it’s all very appropriate and natural. It does turn into more though I promise, they like each other lots ?
To be honest, it was the author who caught my attention with this one, not any cover or title. And really, there isn’t anything particularly attractive about its cover. It’s very simple and to the point. It’s inside you find the real gold.
Word of caution:
If you’re a little squeamish, you’d better not pick this book up. Since agents’ (twitchers’) nanobots go down into people’s brains to control/fight, etc, there is plenty of detailed explanation of them squeezing in through the eye or slogging through mounds of makeup of creeping through scaly skin. There is also violence and such. It is most definitely a boy book and pick this book up if you’re comfortable with graphic descriptions (no sex scenes or anything).
BZRK easily comes into my top three so far this year. Fantastic edgy thriller!
FYI, it has been optioned by Sony Pictures! Yahoo-ey!
Reposted from my blog - http://bookk-spark.blogspot.com/
BZRK is a new epic thriller that is both ground-breaking and amazing. This book is vivd with details but there are few scenes of violence and gore. There are also quite adult themes but these are not very important. The characters are great and so is the plot, which is confusing at the start as the whole concept is very complex. As you get through it gets less and less confusing. I recommend it to the lovers of GONE and Hunger Games. Though I still think Gone is better.
The book mainly follows Sadie and Noah, two teenagers who are to be trained to enter BZRK, a group of teens who are trying to fight the Armstrong Corporation. I liked this two characters, but I felt like the book didn’t have enough of them.
If you have a weak-stomach, don’t read this book. It is full of graphic descriptions that would make the weak-stomach sick. I almost puked while reading this. Also the book is full of mature language, so beware.
Overall, this book was Ok. It had a nice voice, nice characters, and great plot, but I think that Grant’s other book “Gone” is so much better.
-The plot was great, and so was the concept of the book. Really original. Never heard of something like this before. Small robots going into people's body. i like it.
-The mature language felt right. I don't know why, but it did.